PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — COVID-19 survivors, who work at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia are joining forces to donate blood plasma to treat current patients. Fortunately, CHOP does not have a lot of COVID-19 patients.
This virus isn’t so bad for most kids, but for the ones who do, they get really sick – doctors at CHOP say donated plasma is among the experimental therapies being used.
Patients with serious cases of COVID-19 at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia are getting experimental treatments similar to what’s being used for adults.
“We always have to add extra protection when you do experimental things on children,” Dr. David Teachey said.
He says, fortunately, children are not getting as sick with COVID-19, as some adults –it’s unclear why.
“Even those who are very sick with cancer and getting chemotherapy, they’re still doing very well with COVID-19, it actually surprised us a lot,” Dr. Teachey said.
Among the treatments being tested at CHOP – plasma donated by people who’ve recovered.
“Everybody should do their part and help out if given the opportunity,” Chuck Deich said
He is among a number of CHOP employees – COVID-19 survivors – who are donating plasma
“It’s you know a team approach, and everybody trying to help everybody out,” Deich said.
He also says he was first worried about his family, fortunately, they’re fine.
There’s early evidence that plasma from survivors might be a treatment for COVID-19, even in children
“We’re saving for the sickest of the sick because we don’t want to give it to them if it might make it worse,” Dr. Teachey said.
CHOP patients are getting a variety of experimental COVID-19 treatments.
“We’re taking it on a case by case basis,” Dr. Teachey said. “Similar to plasma, hydroxychloroquine, some of the antivirals, they all get discussed and there are children who have had all those different therapies for different reasons.”
CHOP isn’t providing any information on patients.
Employees who are COVID-19 survivors are donating plasma through the Red Cross program and at this point, it goes to a generalized bank and cannot be earmarked for specific patients or hospitals.